The crisis rocking the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), in Oyo State took another dimension on Saturday when the two groups that are battling for the soul of the party held their separate state congresses and elected their new executive members.
The two groups are the one loyal to the state Governor Senator Abiola Ajimobi known as SENACO and the one loyal to a former Governor of the state, Alhaji Lamidi Adesina known as Unity Forum.
They held their parallel congresses simultaneously at two locations within Ibadan the state capital.
While the SENACO held its congress at Lekan Salami Stadium Adamasingba, the Unity Forum held its own congress at Obafemi Awolowo Stadium (formerly Liberty Stadium), Oke Ado.
Our correspondent reports that the Adamasingba congress produced the outgoing Chairman of the party, Chief Akin Oke, a native of Ogbomoso as Chairman.
The Oke Ado’s congress, however, produced the outgoing Deputy Chairman of the party, Alhaji Isiaka Alimi as Chairman and Chief Goke Oyetunji as Deputy Chairman.
Alimi. who hails from Ibadan, the state capital is from Akinyele Local Government Area.
Other members of the exco produced at Adamasingba Stadium include the outgoing Secretary, Mr. Mojeed Olaoya who returned as Secretary and Mr. Lekan Adeyemo who emerged as Deputy Chairman; Dr. Azeez Olatunde (Publicity Secretary) and Mrs. Mabel Williams (Women Leader).
Chairman of the state Congress committee, Alhaji Abdullahi Gwarzo, while addressing delegates at Adamasingba, said that the congress was conducted in line with the directives and guidelines of the party.
Gwarzo said “We did our best. We were able to elect the leadership of Oyo State APC without any rancour. You can see that everybody is happy, including the governor.
“The congress was well-organised and we are not aware of any other congress or faction. APC is one united party.
“Nomination forms were sold to all aspiring members of the party in the state and Lekan Salami Sports Complex is the recognised venue.
Present at Adamasingba congress were Governor Abiola Ajimobi; ex-Governor, Chief Adebayo Alao-Akala, Speaker of the House of Assembly, Hon Olagunju Ojo, a former Senate Majority Leader, Senator Teslim Folarin and Senator Abdulfatai Buhari.
Others include Chief Niyi Akintola (SAN); Mr Sunday Dare; Mr. Zaccheus Adelabu; Hon. Akeem Adeyemi, Hon. Jide Olatunbosun, Hon. Dokun Odebunmi and Hon. Saheed Fijabi.
Ajimobi, while speaking expressed willingness to accommodate all aggrieved party members, adding that the quality of good leaders was determined by their level of tolerance and ability to accommodate opposing views.
He said, “In the spirit of true democracy, aggrieved members would be accommodated but the party won’t tolerate acts of thuggery, brigandage and unnecessary discord”.
The governor, while charging the newly-elected executives to pursue peace and do everything within their means to unite the party, said “politics is about give and take. It is about reconciliation and interest. The most important is to accommodate others”.
Other members of the exco elected at Oke Ado congress include, Hon. Remi Olalekan (Secretary), Alhaji Kayode Adanla (Financial Secretary), Mr. Olawale Sadare (PRO), Babajide Akinola (Youth Leader) and Barrister Azeez Adesope (Legal Adviser).